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Phoenix man survives infection from San Diego beach

Posted at 10:13 PM, Aug 20, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-21 10:29:42-04

A Valley man says he survived a close call after a swim in the ocean in San Diego this month.

Travis Moncur told ABC15 he took a dip in the water at Coronado Beach earlier this month. Within a few days, what he thought was a cold became much more serious, as a rash started spreading up his left arm.

"This was the most excruciating pain I've ever had in my life," Moncur said. 

Moncur says after returning to Arizona; he went to the hospital. His symptoms included pain, and eventually numbness, in his left arm to go along with the spreading rash. 

"I was legitimately at one point afraid I was going to die," he said. "They didn't know what it was or how to treat it."

Moncur says doctors eventually diagnosed him with Gram-Positive Cocci, a bacterial infection that required digging out part of his arm. 

"I think of all those crazy, worst-case scenarios you see on the news," he said.  "I'm like, I can't be that guy."

Moncur says doctors told him the infection was possibly picked up in the water, by means of an open cut.

"I never take life for granted," Moncur said. " attention to your body."

ABC15 talked to a Valley physician, who is not connected to Moncur's case, but who says there are lots of bacteria that live in tourist-friendly waters.

"The ocean rarely looks dirty," said Dr. Don Bucklin. "It's always white sand and waves, and it looks very pristine, even when it has high bacterial counts."

Moncur told ABC15 he is expected to make a full recovery.